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J Biol Chem. 2012 Sep 7;287(37):30906-13. doi: 10.1074/jbc.R111.324962. Epub 2012 Sep 5.

Genome-wide studies of CCCTC-binding factor (CTCF) and cohesin provide insight into chromatin structure and regulation.

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  • 1Center for Systems and Synthetic Biology, Institute for Cellular and Molecular Biology, Section of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, University of Texas, Austin, Texas 78712, USA.


Eukaryotic genomes are organized into higher order chromatin architectures by protein-mediated long-range interactions in the nucleus. CCCTC-binding factor (CTCF), a sequence-specific transcription factor, serves as a chromatin organizer in building this complex chromatin structure by linking chromosomal domains. Recent genome-wide studies mapping the binding sites of CTCF and its interacting partner, cohesin, using chromatin immunoprecipitation coupled with deep sequencing (ChIP-seq) revealded that CTCF globally co-localizes with cohesin. This partnership between CTCF and cohesin is emerging as a novel and perhaps pivotal aspect of gene regulatory mechanisms, in addition to playing a role in the organization of higher order chromatin architecture.

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